un idle

idle

[ahyd-l]
adjective, idler, idlest.
1.
not working or active; unemployed; doing nothing: idle workers.
2.
not spent or filled with activity: idle hours.
3.
not in use or operation; not kept busy: idle machinery.
4.
habitually doing nothing or avoiding work; lazy.
5.
of no real worth, importance, or significance: idle talk.
6.
having no basis or reason; baseless; groundless: idle fears.
7.
frivolous; vain: idle pleasures.
8.
meaningless; senseless: idle threats.
9.
futile; unavailing: idle rage.
verb (used without object), idled, idling.
10.
to pass time doing nothing.
11.
to move, loiter, or saunter aimlessly: to idle along the avenue.
12.
(of a machine, engine, or mechanism) to operate at a low speed, disengaged from the load.
verb (used with object), idled, idling.
13.
to pass (time) doing nothing (often followed by away ): to idle away the afternoon.
14.
to cause (a person) to be idle: The strike idled many workers.
15.
to cause (a machine, engine, or mechanism) to idle: I waited in the car while idling the engine.
noun
16.
the state or quality of being idle.
17.
the state of a machine, engine, or mechanism that is idling: a cold engine that stalls at idle.

Origin:
before 900; 1915–20 for def 12; Middle English, Old English īdel (adj.) empty, trifling, vain, useless; cognate with German eitel

idleness, noun
idly, adverb
overidle, adjective
overidleness, noun
overidly, adverb
unidle, adjective
unidling, adjective
unidly, adverb

idle, idol, idyll (see synonym study at the current entry).


1. sluggish. Idle, indolent, lazy, slothful apply to a person who is not active. To be idle is to be inactive or not working at a job. The word is sometimes derogatory, but not always, since one may be relaxing temporarily or may be idle through necessity: pleasantly idle on a vacation; to be idle because one is unemployed or because supplies are lacking. The indolent person is naturally disposed to avoid exertion: indolent and slow in movement; an indolent and contented fisherman. The lazy person is averse to exertion or work, and especially to continued application; the word is usually derogatory: too lazy to earn a living; incurably lazy. Slothful denotes a reprehensible unwillingness to carry one's share of the burden: so slothful as to be a burden on others. 5. worthless, trivial, trifling. 7. wasteful. 11. See loiter. 13. waste.


1. busy, industrious. 5. important, worthwhile.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
idle (ˈaɪdəl)
 
adj
1.  unemployed or unoccupied; inactive
2.  not operating or being used
3.  (of money) not being used to earn interest or dividends
4.  not wanting to work; lazy
5.  (usually prenominal) frivolous or trivial: idle pleasures
6.  ineffective or powerless; fruitless; vain
7.  without basis; unfounded
 
vb (when tr, often foll by away)
8.  to waste or pass (time) fruitlessly or inactively: he idled the hours away
9.  (intr) to loiter or move aimlessly
10.  (intr) (of a shaft, engine, etc) to turn without doing useful work
11.  (intr) Also (Brit): tick over (of an engine) to run at low speed with the transmission disengaged
12.  (US), (Canadian) (tr) to cause to be inactive or unemployed
 
[Old English īdel; compare Old High German ītal empty, vain]
 
'idleness
 
n
 
'idly
 
adv

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

idle
O.E. idel "empty, void, useless," common W.Gmc. (cf. O.S. idal, O.Fris. idel "empty, worthless," O.Du. idil, Ger. eitel "vain, useless, mere, pure"), of unknown origin. Idle threats preserves original sense; meaning "lazy" is c.1300. The verb sense of "running slowly and steadily without transmitting
power" (as a motor) first recorded 1916.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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